GK410142.RO
                                  STATE OF NEW YORK
                      DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                               JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433

          ------------------------------------X
          IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE :   ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
          APPEAL  OF                                 DOCKET   NO.GK410142RO
           
                 Lekjanin Realty Corporation, :   DRO DOCKET NO.ZEC410014RP
                 c/o Rhodes  Building                (TA11402)(CDR  30,236)
                 Management,                       (BH410358RO)
                                                   
                                                  Tenant:  Diana Rogers
                               PETITIONER     :
          ------------------------------------X

            ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
                                        IN PART
               
          On November 23, 1992 the  above-named  petitioner-owner  filed  a
          Petition for Administrative Review against  an  order  issued  on
          November 4, 1992 by the Rent Administrator, 92-31  Union  Street,
          Jamaica, New York concerning the housing accommodations known  as
          Apartment 5B at 127 West 96th Street, New York, New York  wherein
          the Rent Administrator determined the fair market rent pursuant to 
          a comparability study and the special fair market rent  guideline
          promulgated by the New York City Rent Guidelines Board for use in 
          calculating fair market rent appeals.

          The Commissioner notes that this proceeding was  filed  prior  to
          April 1 , 1984.  Sections 2526.1(a)(4) and 2521.1(d) of the  Rent
          Stabilization  Code  (effective  May  1,  1987)  governing   rent
          overcharge  and  fair  market  rent  proceedings   provide   that
          determination of these matters be based  upon  the  law  or  code
          provisions in  effect  on  March  31,  1984.   Therefore,  unless
          otherwise  indicated,  reference  to   Sections   of   the   Rent
          Stabilization Code (Code) contained herein are  to  the  Code  in
          effect on April 30, 1987.

          The issue in this appeal is whether the Rent Administrator's order 
          was warranted.

          The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in the record and 
          has carefully considered that portion of the record relevant to the 
          issue raised by the administrative appeal.


















          GK410142.RO


          This proceeding was originally commenced in May, 1983 by the filing 
          of an overcharge complaint form by the tenant with the  New  york
          City Conciliation and Appeals Board, the predecessor agency to the 
          DHCR.  The tenant took occupancy pursuant to a  lease  commencing
          September 10, 1977 and expiring September 30, 1979 at  a  monthly
          rent of $350.00.  She named the owner  as  "Peter  Lekjanin,  c/o
          Rhodes Building Mgt."

          By letter dated July 13, 1983 the DHCR advised the parties that the 
          case would be processed as a fair market rent appeal.  

          In answer, the  owner  stated  that  the  subject  apartment  was
          decontrolled on April 30, 1975 and was rented on June 1, 1975.  The 
          owner submitted leases for the  prior  tenant.   The  owner  also
          submitted June 30, 1974 rent data for the subject line.

          In Order Number CDR 30,236 the Rent  Administrator  adjusted  the
          initial legal regulated rent by establishing a fair market rent of 
          $224.00 effective June 1, 1975,  the  commencement  date  of  the
          initial rent stabilized lease.  The owner was directed to  refund
          excess rent of $6,296.95 to the tenant.

          In a Petition for Administrative Review (Docket No.  BH410358RO),
          the  owner  contended  that  the  Rent  Administrator  improperly
          processed the tenant's complaint of rent  overcharge  as  a  fair
          market rent appeal; that the tenant failed  to  allege  that  her
          initial rent exceed the fair market rent and to present facts  to
          support such allegation; and that the owner was not  afforded  an
          opportunity to submit post-June 30, 1974 comparability data.

          In an order issued on February 26, 1990 the proceeding was remanded 
          to afford the owner an opportunity to submit post-June  30,  1974
          comparability data.  The owner failed to submit any such data  in
          the new proceeding (Docket No.EC410014RP).

          In an order issued on November 4,  1992  the  Rent  Administrator
          determined that the tenant had paid  excess  rent  of  $7,524.96,
          including excess security of $105.68,  from  September  10,  1977
          through August 22, 1984, the date that she bought the  apartment.
          The order listed the owner as "Peter  Lekjanin/  Lekjanin  Realty
          Corp., c/o Rhodes Building Mgmt. Inc."
















          GK410142.RO

          In this petition (signed  by  Peter  Lekutanaj,  who  signed  the
          tenant's 1977 lease and who is listed as the owner and/ or manager 
          on all but one of the registrations from 1984 through 1992),  the
          owner contends in substance  that  the  Administrator  improperly
          processed the tenant's complaint of rent  overcharge  as  a  fair
          market rent appeal,even though the tenant was not the first tenant 
          following vacancy decontrol, even though she never indicated that 
          she was challenging the Fair Market Rent, and even though she did 
          not as required allege any facts which would support any allegation 
          that her initial rent was in excess of the Fair Market Rent; that 
          the Administrator's attempt to circumvent the requirements of the 
          Rent Stabilization Law and Code has resulted in a windfull to the 
          tenant since the owner no  longer  has  documentation  for  other
          apartments in the "B" line and thus cannot  submit  comparability
          data; that the Administrator should have  allowed  the  owner  to
          submit comparables either based on the registered lawful rents, or 
          pursuant to the current Code, since the Courts have held that the 
          DHCR should apply the current law in effect; and that  the  Peter
          Lekjanin should not have been listed on the order  since  he  was
          never an owner of the subject premises, it having been owned at all 
          relevant times by Lekjanin Realty Corp.

          In answer, the tenant asserts in substance  that  the  owner  was
          notified on July 13, 1983 that the matter would be processed as a 
          fair market rent appeal.

          The Commissioner is of the opinion that this petition  should  be
          granted in part.

          While the tenant filed her complaint on a rent overcharge complaint 
          form, it is apparent from the tenant's complaint that the  tenant
          wished to challenge the initial legal regulated rent.  The tenant 
          submitted with her complaint a copy of the 1972 Maximum Base Rent 
          order for the subject apartment and  calculations  for  the  fair
          market rent for the prior tenant based on the 1972  Maximum  Base
          Rent.  It is within the discretion of the DHCR to treat complaints 
          or applications so as to insure that the complaint or allegations 
          raised by the complaint or applicant are addressed despite the use 
          of an incorrect form.  The Commissioner therefore finds that  the
          Administrator properly processed the case as a fair  market  rent
          appeal.






          While the complainant was the second stabilized tenant, the owner 
          did not submit proof of service of a DC-2 form on the prior tenant, 
          which proof would have  foreclosed  the  complainant's  right  to
          challenge the initial legal regulated rent.  The owner did submit 
          a Form R-42 Landlord's Report of Statutory Decontrol, but even that 












          GK410142.RO

          was for Apartment 15B rather than 5B.

          The Commissioner finds that the tenant's fair market rent appeal is 
          not materially defective because of the tenant's failure to allege 
          that the rent exceeded the  fair  market  rent  for  the  subject
          apartment.  Such allegation is implicit in the tenant's complaint 
          as indicated above.  The Commissioner further finds that since the 
          directive  to  tenants  in  Section  25(c)  of  the  former  Rent
          Stabilization Code to provide supporting facts is qualified by the 
          phrase "to the best of his information and belief," it cannot  be
          read to create a firm requirement and  the  tenant's  failure  to
          present such facts does not warrant dismissal of the tenant's fair 
          market rent appeal.  (Accord: ARL 6666-L).

          Sections 26-513 of the Rent Stabilization Law and 2522.3(e) of the 
          current Code provide, in pertinent part, that  fair  market  rent
          adjustment applications are to be determined by the use of special 
          fair market rent guidelines orders promulgated by the New York City 
          Rent Guidelines Board and by the rents generally prevailing in the 
          same area for substantially similar housing accommodations.  

          In order to determine rents generally prevailing in same area for 
          substantially  similar  housing  accommodations,  it  is   DHCR's
          procedure for fair market rent appeal cases filed prior to  April 
          1, 1984 to allow owners to submit June 30, 1974 free market rental 
          data for complete lines of apartments, beginning with the subject 
          line.  The average of such comparable rentals  will  be  then  be
          updated by  annual  guidelines  increases.   Alternatively,  DHCR
          procedure allows owners to have comparability determined  on  the
          basis of rents charged after June 30, 1984.  In order to use this 
          method, owners were required prior to November 1, 1984 to  submit
          rental history data for all stabilized apartments in the  subject
          premises and subsequent to November 1, 1984 to submit such data for 
          complete lines of apartments beginning  with  the  subject  line.
          Post-June 30, 1974 rent data will be utilized if  the  comparable
          apartment was rented to a first stabilized tenant within one year 
          of the renting of the subject apartment and if the owner  submits
          proof of service of an initial legal regulated rent notice  (DC-2
          Notice) or apartment registration form indicating that the rent is 
          not subject to challenge.





          The Commissioner does not consider that the owner has been unduly 
          prejudiced even if it did discard rental data relevant to a  fair
          market rent appeal proceeding which it has known about since 1983. 
          The owner did respond to the opportunity to submit June 30,  1974
          comparability data by submitting useable data for two apartments in 
          the "B" line, although it did not respond to a later opportunity to 
          submit post-  June  30,  1974  comparables.   The  rents  of  the






          GK410142.RO

          comparable apartments were updated  to  the  time  of  the  prior
          tenant's first (initial stabilized) lease, and averaged with  the
          rent obtained by use of the Special Guidelines Order, to arrive at 
          the  Initial  legal  Regulated  Rent.    Appropriate   Guidelines
          increases were than applied to that rent to arrive at the  lawful
          rents for the complainant.  

          Regarding the owner's contention that the Administrator should have 
          allowed it to submit comparables either based on  the  registered
          lawful rents, or pursuant to the current Code,  the  Commissioner
          notes that the fair market rent appeal applied to the rent existing 
          in 1975; that rents were not registered until 1984 and thus could 
          not be used to determine a 1975 rent;  and that pursuant to Section 
          2521.1 of the current Code , fair market rent appeals filed prior 
          to April 1, 1984 are to be determined based upon the Code in effect 
          on March 31, 1984.

          The owner is correct about Peter Lekjanin.   Whether or  not  the
          name of Lekjanin Realty was formed by combining portions  of  the
          names of two or more people, there is no evidence in  the  record
          that anyone with the name of Peter Lekjanin (as opposed to  Peter
          Lekutanaj) even exists.  The Administrator's order should therefore 
          be modified to state the owner as "Lekjanin  Realty  Corp.,   c/o
          Rhodes Building Mgmt. Inc."   In  addition,  excess  security  of
          $105.68 should be removed from the total of $7,524.96, since  the
          complainant bought the apartment in 1984.

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code, 
          it is

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted in 
          part and that the Administrator's order be, and the same hereby is, 
          modified in accordance with this order and  opinion.   The  total
          refund due the tenant is $7,419.28.

          ISSUED:
           

                                                   JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                   Deputy Commissioner







    

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